We had heard from Emily on Tuesday the 25th that she was back in the United States and had arrived safely in California but we didn't know WHERE she was exactly. Thursday I got a surprise email from a total stranger with a picture of my beautiful daughter. The text was in Spanish so I asked my co-worker to help me write back asking WHERE it was taken!! I didn't get a response. It was really a strange feeling not knowing where my child was....
Anyway, all is well now. I know where she is and how to write to her. Monday is basically non-productive for me as I just want to sit at my computer and hit refresh over and over again. We will be on a cruise next Monday and it will kill me to not have internet access until likely the next day.
She sent more pictures but they keep disappearing from my email. It is the weirdest thing. I forwarded the emails to Darren and they showed up again... for a few hours.
Here is her letter (and please if you have a moment drop her a line - the address is on the header of the blog):
Ok, first off thank you SO MUCH for the emails. I was feeling like I was on a drought since I haven’t been able to really email you for a long time. Tell everyone else thank you for the emails! We email in the church building family history center (closet) so we can print out our emails! If I don't have time to reply right now to each one individually I will print them off and write to you soon since you will probably get them in like 3 days!! CALIFORNIA ROCKS!
First off yes I got the 2 packages with my bedding and supplies and CANDY. Thank you soooo much. It was perfect. I can’t tell you how awesome it is too to have a new pillow case, new pillow, new bed mattress cover. I was like happy buzzing in my head because I was so excited. You raised me right mom. Congratulations!
Also..... MY BIKE IS AMAZING!!! I love it SO much. Did you help pick it out?? If not it is white and cute with sea green and grey highlights!!! It is soo cute. I definitely need to bring it home with me. We have a car, but we only have a certain number of miles each month so we have totally gone out on our bikes!
The first day of exercise I basically made my companion go on a bike ride with me!! Sacramento mornings are one of the most beautiful things I have EVER seen. It is so clear and the sun is huge and orange!!! I love it. We call the exercise hour morning glory:)
Ok so I am just going to get crazy on you here to try and tell you everything!! But my new companion is Hermana Skidmore.
SOUND FAMILIAR??????? CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT!!!??? I told her I followed her blog before coming out here, and then asked her to sign my Preach My Gospel book. HAHA.
She is amazing. She is going to be the perfect trainer. It is only me and her for Sisters in our area. It is just us in an apartment which always makes me nervous, and it’s her last transfer before she goes home so at first I was really stressed out because I want it to be fun for her, but I think I will be just fine. We are together until Thanksgiving because you are with your trainer for 12 weeks...... craziness!!! But little miracle. I can’t believe she is the one person my companion was chosen to be.
I knew there was a possibility of it being her because we passed the chapel and I saw her in there. So this is how it worked:
Wednesday after training we slept at a member’s house
Thursday we went to the Chapel and we got our companions and locations. They had trainers on one side of the chapel, and then all of us on another side of the chapel. President Jardine would call your name and you would go stand by him and then he would read your call.
Sooooo Hermana Sheffer, you have been called to serve in the RIO TIERRA WEST ward, NORTH SACRAMENTO!!!!! Your companion will be Hermana Skidmore!!!
I was so exhilarated it was awesome!!! So I am in SAC the CITY! And it is crazy I will tell you that!
We drove to our apartment and (oh side note while I am thinking about it, you can only send stuff to mission home!!) and started working! That same day! Hermana Skidmore and I planned out the rest of our day and began tracting.
Ready for my miracle?? Hermana Skidmore told me to pick a street in the blue area of our zone that we could go tracting on. I picked a street called Tourney, because it sounded like Journey, and I always want my motto to be “find joy in the journey”!!!
Later that day we went out to tract and there was a young hispanic looking lady outside sweeping her sidewalk. We immediately went over and talked to her. She is from Bolivia. I asked her if she had seen/talked to missionaries before and she said she had, and that she really believed our message. We made an appointment with her the next day. The very next day we talked to her and told her about the restoration and she loved it. She loves the Bible and prays with her family every night, and she really wants to come to church. We were taught in the MTC to extend the baptismal invitation right away so I did (I butchered it) and she said YES (note: yes she knew what she was agreeing to haha)! She is totally ready, and is not saying yes just because, she knows a lot already about the church. We are going to keep teaching her until September 27 and that is when she will be getting baptized. Hma Skidmore said that it is a definite miracle that we were able to find her! She had been taught before so that is my crazy first day of the mission miracle!!!!
The other days were not exactly miracles haha. But I am learning. I have a really hard time contacting because I have no idea what to say. I am stumbling with Spanish and it is hard when I don’t know what to say in English. And there is so much time spent knocking on doors. Seriously. And I have not heard the words "Soy Catolico" so many times in my life!!! Every single person I have talked to has been Catholic. So many people. It is kind of hard because everyone says, “I have been Catholic my whole life”. It is kind of hard to get around.
I was kind of getting discouraged because nothing was happening. Our appointments we had made wouldn’t be there, people are never inside, people don’t want to hear, etc. Oh and my Spanish is pretty bad. I don't understand hardly anything! I will get it eventually I am sure.
Yesterday on Sunday we had another miracle day. The first person we went to meet as soon as she opened the door said, "Oh I was going to call you because I want to come to church and I know something is there!" Wow, that’s amazing. Then we were walking from that very house and there was a younger girl waiting outside for a ride. She spoke to us first and asked how we were doing which is weird, usually we have to initiate conversations. She told us that she was looking for a church and wanted to meet with us..... What?? So we set her up with the English Elders. Then we were walking down the street to meet with a possible referral. Outside the house someone was watering the trees and we started talking to her. Our referral was her mom and she was in the hospital (her mom is like 80). So we offered to help as she was going through a really hard time. I said a prayer right there for her mom and I said thank you for families and asked to bless her mom, like really simple, but after that she gave us a hug and invited us in for some water. We got to meet her dad as well, and he is like Grandpa Sheffer but hispanic. He was really cute. And we talked to them about the Book of Mormon, but they were really Catholic. They had small pictures of the Pope etc. But my companion said a prayer after and (his name was Felipe) just put his hand over his heart for thanks. I can’t explain it. He had pictures all over his wall of his family so we talked about his family, and then he said we could come back another day.
We talked to his nephew later who had given us the referral, and he said "What they let you in? They are so Catholic they would never let missionaries in". HA HA Miracle! I am so blessed to know these people.
Well this is one long email.
But I am glad you got the pictures! Everyone in my ward (all 40 of us hahaha) speaks English too, but the Angeles who sent you the picture doesn’t know English at all so she probably didn’t answer you back.
It is really fun because every Wednesday night we teach an English class. I love it. It is really fun to help people pronounce things right and understand. Super funny, but I can’t say anything because they equally help me out with my Spanish. I can’t wait until I can really understand what is going on (someday… hopefully sooner rather than later).
Oh I got my first cheek kiss too hahah.
Anyways I will try to send pictures.
Oh I got my first cheek kiss too hahah.
Anyways I will try to send pictures.
Sorry I didn’t answer to your email but I enjoyed reading it!!!!
Tell dad and the kids thanks so much tooooo!!
Love you GUYS MUCH!
OUT!!! From SAC TOWN!